Louis Malle's War Films
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The paper analyzes the film "Lacombe, Lucien" that follows a young man caught in the collaboration movement during the German Occupation of France in 1944-1945 as well as the film "Au Revoir les Enfants" that is a semi-autobiographical account of Louis Malle's time spent as a young boy in a school hiding Jewish children during the same period. The paper explores the ways in which, despite an apparent realism based on historical knowledge and memory, the films might correspond to the notion of postmodern historical drama. The paper comes to the conclusion that Louis Malle's concept of 'reinventing the past' denies his films the status of a documentary but categorizes them as postmodern historical films.
From the Paper:"Malle (in Bernstein, 1988) said about Au revoir les enfants, 'I reinvented the past in the pursuit of a haunting and timeless truth'. By remembering his own childhood and individual war experience, he provided what appears to be a fairly accurate account of the period as recollected by himself. Despite the fact that it is semi-autobiographical, it can be read as a portrait of a section of society and of childhood under the Occupation. It is also a personal journey of grieving for the 'real' life event that the young Louis Malle and his peers endured during the raid carried out by the Gestapo on their school. We assume that the character of Julien Quentin, played by Gaspard Manesse, is Malle's younger self and Jean Kippelstein, disguised as Jean Bonnet and played by Raphael Fetjo, is the jewish boy Malle remembers."
Sample of Sources Used:
- Barral, P. (1977, January). La Lorraine pendant la guerre: La lutte discrete d'une province exposee. Revue d'histoire de la deuxieme guerre mondiale (105), pp. 3, 8.
- Bernstein, R. (1988, February 7). Malle confronts haunting memory. The New York Times.
- Bory, J. (1974, January 28). Servitudes et miseres d'un salaud. Le Nouvel Observateur , pp. 56-57.
- Bradshaw, P. (2009, April 21). The poet of modern fears. The Guardian , p. 22.
- Eco, U. (1983, 1984). Postscript to The Name of the Rose. (W. Weaver, Trans.) London: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich.
Cite this Film Review:
Louis Malle's War Films (2009, July 31) Retrieved October 03, 2022, from https://www.academon.com/film-review/louis-malle-war-films-115540/
"Louis Malle's War Films" 31 July 2009. Web. 03 October. 2022. <https://www.academon.com/film-review/louis-malle-war-films-115540/>